Birthday Pizza and Legos

Our second son turned 9 recently.  We usually try to plan a family trip or vacation around his birthday.  In the past, we have taken him to the aquarium in Newport KY, to the aquarium in Gattlinburg TN, to towns we have never been to before and done something special like see civil war things or ride around town in a horse and carriage, and last year we took him to the ocean near Charleston SC, and to a swamp see a live alligator in its natural environment. 

But this year, I am nine months pregnant, and funds are very tight, we did not get to plan a vacation.  So we chose to stay close to home and celebrate his birthday.  He decided he would like to go to Chucke Cheese for pizza, and he really wanted a new Lego set for his birthday.

Chucke Cheese offers a great program where they email you birthday coupons for free tokens and discounts for celebrating birthdays at their resturaunt.  This makes the adventure to Chucke Cheese very affordable to celebrate a special occasion, especially when you have a large family.

With special discounts, we were able to get two large hamburger and cheese pizzas, drinks, and over 100 game tokens.  This provided the 5 kids and us parents with almost three hours of food and entertainment with lots of fun arcade games that they rarely have played, maybe twice in their life  (We did this almost a year ago with our six year old son’s birthday, and we went once three years ago too).   Without the special discounts, we would not have been able to take him there this year. 

Some of the games are great skill builders.  Some games are great for eye hand coordination too.   Many of the games also print out tickets as you score points, and in turn, you can take the tickets and cash them in for prizes up at the counter. 

Some lower prizes are things like bugs, rings, tops, cars, candy, etc.  Some higher scoring prizes are stuffed animals, board games, and project kits.   My kids love feeding the tickets into the ticket counting machine.  They also love redeeming the reciepts for a prize.  Someday, I hope to implement something similar for chores, do this chore, earn a ticket, redeem X number of tickets for a prize.   Someday.

If you want to spend a little more money, you can host a large birthday party with friends with pizza, cake, goodie bags, and a special opportunity to see a Chucke Cheese show and do much more for lots of friends.  But we did not do that.

There are free things to do too, such as the indoor playground in the first picture above.    My kids love playing on this playground.  It has so many tunnels and places to hide, and fun slides to escape down, etc.  It really is a lot of fun for kids.

Next,  we headed to the other side of town to let him pick out his Lego kit.  We went to Toys R Us and they were having a special sale on Lego’s and a free special Lego building project right in the middle of the store.  Wow.  He felt so blessed to get to do this on “HIS” special birthday.  He just beemed with joy.

The kids lined up and were given  a small ziploc bag to place Lego pieces in.  The boxes were labled with how many pieces of each item were needed. 

Then the kids moved to another table where they followed a set of directions and used the pieces in thier bags to build a car. 

They were able to keep the car they built and take it home to play with.

The next day, our birthday boy built his new Lego project.  Lots of Lego cars from the movie Cars.

And then he played with it most of the day, and nearly everyday since.

We enjoyed cake and ice cream at home.  We made his cake and celebrated together. 
Happy 9th Birthday son!

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